"We see, in many a land, the proudest dynasties and tyrannies still crushing, with their mountain weight, every free motion of the Consciences and hearts of men. We see, on the other hand, the truest heroism for the right and the greatest devotion to the Truth in hearts that God has touched. We have a work to do, as great as our forefathers and, perhaps, far greater. The enemies of Truth are more numerous and subtle than ever and the needs of the Church are greater than at any preceding time. If we are not debtors to the present, then men were never debtors to their age and their time. Brethren, we are debtors to the hour in which we live. Oh, that we might stamp it with Truth and that God might help us to impress upon its wings some proof that it has not flown by neglected and unheeded." -- C.H. Spurgeon . . . "If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." John 8:31, 32 . . . . .


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Thursday, December 24, 2009

The Humble King & The Little Drummer Boy

 ~~By James Fire

Some of you may recall after reading an article from FROM The MIND of FIRE that one of my favorite Christmas Carols is JOY to the WORLD. Well, another favorite of mine is The LITTLE DRUMMER Boy.

“Why?” you ask.
Well let’s set the stage first: Can we know that this carol is in any way factual? Perhaps not, although caravans, like the one that those Wise Man had, often used ‘drummer boys’ to lead them, beating on their drums in order to keep time in the march. Journeys were often arduous and most difficult, and it was easy in fatigue to lose one’s step. So these little guys were employed, sometimes for a mere pittance or a free meal, to lead caravans.

Whether or not there actually was a little drummer boy at the scene, it really doesn’t matter as the story itself illustrates some significant truths (although I harbor a belief that there really was; so call me a romantic already!).
The timing of the Wise Men’s visitation according to tradition is a little bit off historically as well. They didn’t arrive at the LORD’s birth, for since the time they first saw the star that led them, to the time when they actually began the journey and then found the child, it was nearly two years (which is why Herod, in an attempt to eliminate the competition for the position of ‘King of the Jews’, and ‘King of Israel’, ordered the death of all male children, two years old and younger; MATT 2:16).

These Wise Men, or ‘Magi’ were known among their own culture as ‘King Makers’; it was they that decided on who would become the next King of Patria; these aristocratic and knowledgeable men (in fact the word ‘magistrate’ comes from ‘Magi) were schooled by none other than Daniel himself when he was made leader of these ‘magicians’ in Persia, from which derived the same oral traditions of this ancient biblical prophecy of a star that would announce the arrival of the Messiah - -

NUMBERS 24:16-17

He hath said, which heard the words of God, and knew the knowledge of the most High, which saw the vision of the Almighty, falling into a trance, but having his eyes open:
I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not nigh: there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel. . .

It’s been recorded that these Magi brought gifts for the Messiah-child; gifts well suited for such a One, for these were kingly presents, namely gold, frankincense and myrrh.

Now let’s look at the lyrics for this Christmas Carol –

Little Drummer Boy
Come they told me
Pa rum pum pum pum
A new born King to see,
Pa rum pum pum pum
Our finest gifts we bring
Pa rum pum pum pum
To lay before the King
Pa rum pum pum pum
Rum pum pum pum
Rum pum pum pum
So to honor Him
Pa rum pum pum pum,
When we come.

Baby Jesus
Pa rum pum pum pum
I am a poor boy too,
Pa rum pum pum pum
I have no gift to bring
Pa rum pum pum pum
That's fit to give our King
Pa rum pum pum pum
Rum pum pum pum
Rum pum pum pum
Shall I play for you?
Pa rum pum pum
On my drum.

Mary nodded
Pa rum pum pum pum
The ox and lamb kept time
Pa rum pum pum pum
I played my drum for Him
Pa rum pum pum
I played my best for Him
Pa rum pum pum pum
Rum pum pum pum
Rum pum pum pum
Then He smiled at me
Pa rum pum pum pum
Me and my drum.

Now let's listen to this treasured carol performed magnificently, just as I remember it as a child:

I can well imagine that after that enormously long voyage, these Parthians were travel-weary to the point of exhaustion and yet there they were, approaching the humble home of Joseph and Mary, by the Star light that led them there.

They clap their hands, (which in that culture was the way they solicited entry into a dwelling whereas we would knock on the door) and in moments Mary answers, and finds to her astonishment, these regally garbed foreigners standing at her door! They declare their business: they have come to pay homage to the King of Israel, and brought gifts for the purpose of worshiping Him.

They are brought inside and now Joseph’s face is an expression of wonderment, and the little boy Jesus stands before them, gazing at them, each in turn, and offers them a smile.

Instantly they bend the knee, and bow before Him, and then break out the gifts: gold representing the gift given to Kings, for Him Who is the King of kings; frankincense for the purpose of priestly prayers and intercessions for Him who is our High Priest; myrrh, a precious spice that was used in many different ways, but primarily for the purpose of embalming, and thus represented His sacrificial death.

In the midst of all this, one shy drummer boy kneels, off to the side, studying his surroundings mutely, and observing to his great surprise how this Messiah-boy was a poor boy, much like himself, and not at all like his own masters who brought him to this foreign land of Israel. As he eyes these gifts of such vast wealth as he could never accumulate in a hundred life times, he is pierced through the heart with great sorrow.

What could a lowly drummer boy possibly offer to the Messiah? What gift could he bring that would be worthy of this One? He had no gift to bring: nothing at all.
I imagine at that realization, a tear formed in his eye, and slowly slid down his smooth cheek, and then fell onto the skin of his drum. Perhaps it made the slightest of sound, enough to draw his attention, and then an idea struck him.

He offered, as his gift, to play his drum for the Messiah. Stunned by such a ridiculous notion, perhaps the Magi were about to rebuke the lad for his impertinence, but Mary nods her consent, and licking his lips nervously, the little drummer boy begins to play, keenly aware of the eyes of all in that place, staring at him; including the One for Whom he was playing.

Another King would no doubt be offended by such a mean gift, such a frivolous offering. Perhaps he would have a scathing word of rapprochement for one who would offer a ludicrous means of homage.

Yet those of us who know the LORD Jesus, know how differently He sees things. Indeed, this is the very KING of Kings, before Whom all other monarchs in all their power and glory pale into utter insignificance; and if they would mock such an offer, one might suppose that the King of greatest glory would be right to do so, and even more so. 
Yet He received such, being the Humble King of Glory that He is; the same One who, observing the widow who offered her two mites to the LORD and declared that she gave more than all the others, who contributed thousands of times more in monetary value than her (MARK 12:41-44)!

He did not despise this mean offering, but on the contrary, was honored by it, for what this lad had, it was all that he had, and it came straight from his worshipful, warm heart, not from the cold treasuries of wealthy noblemen, who had more treasures besides awaiting them at home.

He who made the ear, heard this sound of drums offered for Him, He who made the hand, watched as this boy used his to create this rhythm, He who formed the mind, observed as this lad focused his in this, his rendering. He played his best for Him, and He was honored.

It’s the same with you and I: at this Christmas season, we exchange gifts among ourselves, and we celebrate the incredible Gift that was granted to us by God the Father, in the giving of His own beloved Son, who would die for our sins, and grant us eternal life in His Name.

Yet on that first Christmas, it was Jesus who received the gifts.

What gift could we give the KING of the Universe? What would be suitable for the KING of Kings? What fitting glory that we could contrive would be equal to His MAJESTY and GLORY and HOLINESS?

Any such gifts we could bring to Him, no matter how costly in monetary value, would be a trifle equal to those of the Wise Men; that which is esteemed by Divinity are gifts from the heart, and the greatest gift we can bring to the Messiah, whose birth we now celebrate, is our hearts themselves.

Bless the LORD Jesus this Christmas, and offer Him your heart, either for the first time, or in an act of renewal. Our Humble King will receive such as a beautiful, highly valued gift that it is!
To learn more about what it means to give your heart to the LORD, please visit this site:

Giving Your Heart To The LORD Jesus

LUKE 2:10-11
And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

May the LORD Jesus bless you this Christmas season . . . quite literally: WAY TOO MUCH!!

brother James

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